Boris Johnson sends EU unsigned letter seeking Brexit delay along with another advising against it

Andrew Woodcock

Prime Minister Boris Johnson has sent two letters to European Council president Donald Tusk – an unsigned message relaying parliament’s request for an extension to Brexit and a letter from him setting out why he does not believe delay would be in the interests of the EU or UK.

Downing Street said it believes the move fulfils the requirements of the Benn Act, which required the prime minister to seek an extension beyond his 31 October deadline if he was unable to secure parliamentary approval of his Brexit deal by the end of Saturday.

But Scottish National Party MP Joanna Cherry dismissed the PM’s gambit as “pathetic” and said she would be pushing for legal action in Scotland’s highest court on Monday.

Responding to the news of the two letters, Ms Cherry – who led a successful legal action against Mr Johnson’s five-week suspension of parliament – said: ”This is pathetic. Boris Johnson promised the Scottish court he would comply with the Benn Act and not seek to frustrate it.

“Looks like he’s breaking both promises. Fortunately, no need to raise new proceedings – our existing case is back in court on Monday.”